Malala Yousafzai, the teenaged Pakistani education activist attacked by the Taliban, is among the three candidates nominated for this year’s World Children’s Prize, also known as the Children’s Nobel.
Yousafzai has been nominated “for her courageous and dangerous fight for girls’ right to education”, according to the the website of the foundation that presents the award.
“She started to speak out for girls’ rights at the age of 11, when the Taliban banned girls from going to school in the Swat Valley in Pakistan,” it stated.
“Malala defied the rules and kept going to school. Her life was under threat and at times she had to go into hiding. Finally, at the age of 15 Malala was shot and almost killed by the Taliban on her way home from school. But Malala survived.”
According to Yousafzai’s candidate profile, the Taliban thought they could silence Malala by killing her.
“Instead they gave her an even stronger voice, which can now be heard all over the world,” it stated.
The other two candidates in the running are John Wood, a former manager in Microsoft, and Indira Ranamagar, a Nepali child rights activist.
“John Wood has been nominated for the 2014 World’s Children’s Prize for his 15-year fight for children’s right to education,” his candidate profile reads.
“John quit his job as a manager at the Microsoft company to fulfil his dream: to fight poverty by giving children all over the world the chance to go to school.”
Ranamagar has been nominated for her 20-year struggle for prisoners’ children in Nepal.
“She grew up in extreme poverty and had to fight to be able to go to school. Even as a young girl she knew that she wanted to help other people who had hard lives,” the website candidate profile stated.
Instituted in 2000, the World Children’s Prize is supported by 606 organisations and departments of education.
The World’s Children’s Prize Foundation is regulated by the Svensk Insamlingskontroll (Swedish Fundraising Control), which protects the interests of donors and ensures that the funds raised are used appropriately.
Leading patrons of the award are Nobel laureates Aung San Suu Kyi and Desmond Tutu and East Timor’s Prime Minister Xanana Gusmão.
Members of the jury for the award consists of around 15 children from across the world.
“They are experts in the rights of the child through their own life experiences as debt slaves, child soldiers, street children or refugees, or through having experienced other violations of the rights of the child,” the foundation’s website stated.